The ambrotype was only in popular production for about ten years.
So, if this is part of your genealogy puzzle, you can be sure it was produced between 1855 and about 1865.
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This allowed the negative-looking bare image to appear as a positive.
The ambrotype was packaged in the same manner as the daguerreotype, encased with a mat, top glass, and preserver; and then placed in a case. While the ambrotype is typically cased like a daguerreotype, it does not exhibit the same look. Rotating the image will not cause the image to reflect like a mirror or look like a negative.
Image on Glass Dating ambrotype photographs is fairly easy for genealogists.
It is a cased image like the daguerreotype, but it was short-lived.
Even the softest camera lens brush will scratch the delicate surface.
At best use compressed air to remove loose dust or particles.
The ambrotype's life span was very short, wide-spread use was less than ten years, but produced a vast collection of beautiful images.
While the name ambrotype was derived from the Greek word ambro, meaning imperishable, it was still a delicate, easily damaged photograph.
This and other characteristics will help you in dating ambrotypes.